It seems to me that our nation has developed a particular problem over the years since the founders put forth a new government in what was a new land. Our republic has, over the years, come to the point at which those we elect no longer represent the views of those who elect them, but, represent those who whisper most fervently in their ears.
I do not believe that our country was ever intended to have battalions of lobbyists pitching agendas and money at those who are elected to equitably enact laws for the common good, not laws to benefit whatever cause catches their ear and Kanken laptop backpack.
For the vast majority, if not all, of members of whatever stripe re-election becomes the tail that wags the dog. And re-election requires money, larger and larger quantities of money, and a commodity which lobbyists have in great supply. Money that comes with no strings attached, “but, when this vote come up, if you could just see your way clear to take a hard look at our needs first…” a soft voice whispers in the ear.
There have been many efforts aimed at reform of unbridled lobby efforts. So far as I am aware, all have fallen short of achieving the desired effect, so, perhaps a new direction is needed.
I believe that our Congress should be required to take advantage of the most modern technology in its deliberative efforts, something that corporate America has embraced to some degree in the past several years and seems to be expanding the Fjallraven Kanken Classic at a rapid rate.
Congress should have virtual meetings. Rather than gather in Washington D.C., each congressman should have his or her office in his or her home district, and each senator’s office should be in the capitol of their state. All meetings, votes and hearings of committees and of the bodies as a whole should be done via secure Internet links (surely the NSA could provide incorruptible connections and cypher algorithms).
I can foresee only two instances per year when they might have to be physically present in Washington: to be sworn in (iffy, as a judge could administer the oath where ever they might be) and for the State Of The Union Message. Other than that, they should be safely ensconced in their respective state, living among the people who elected them and insulated from the special interests who batter at their doors and insinuate themselves between the elected, the Frost Green Kanken, and the electors.
The technology is available, the need is obvious, and the time is now. Objections will be made, but they will come from those who have a stake in the present system, the lobbyists and those in the houses of congress inured to the present system. It is time to move our deliberative body into a future with the ability to freely vote in the best interest of all of us rather than some of us.